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Posts posted by marpacifica

  1. Hi,


    Help Please!


    I'm headed on a dive trip tomorrow and would like advice on which pin connectors I need to cover to fire my strobes properly.


    My setup is:

    Nikon D700

    Aquatica housing, dual Nikonos bulkhead connectors

    Sea & Sea strobe connectors, inserts into one bulkhead and forks to each of two Sea & Sea YSD90DX Duo

    Manual shutter and aperture settings 1/125 sec F16, 200 ISO


    It won't fire if all five pin connectors are open in the hotshoe connection.


    I remember reading somewhere that I need to cover some of the connections, but my searches yield different results -- some advice is to cover all but the center connector. Haven't tried that yet, but the strobes did fire when I covered the bottom two connectors. Should I just go with covering all but the center pin, or is it OK if I cover just the bottom two connections?


    Anyone have a handy diagram???


    Thanks much in advance.

  2. Hi,


    I am selling an Aquatica 8" acrylic dome port, shade and extension ring (with all o-rings in excellent, lubricated shape) that are designed for use with the Nikon 12-24mm f/4 DX wide angle zoom lens. Comes with the original neoprene cover/protector (doubles as a hood for your head if you get cold!).


    No scratches on the port, but a few cosmetic scratches on the shade that don't affect your images. I am the original owner and used the port about 40 times. I've taken many photographs with this port/lens combination that have been published in magazines.


    I upgraded to the Nikon 14-24mm full frame lens, which won't fit in the the 8" port, so have no more use for it.


    $200 for the port, shade, cover and extension ring (1/3 of what you'd pay new); you pay shipping and insurance, probably about $20.


    Thanks for looking!

  3. I just got back from a dive trip to the Turks and Caicos, where I tried to use the Nikon 14-24mm in the 8" dome port. To my dismay and surprise, I couldn't get the lens past the extension ring. The lens shade seemed slightly too wide to fit through the ring.


    Has anyone experienced this and found a way around it, like removing the lens shade? I couldn't find a way to remove the shade without breaking it.

  4. Hi,


    I am looking into housing my D3 in an Aquatica, but am unsure whether the Nikon 14-24mm will do better in the 9.25" optical dome port. I already have the 8" dome port from when I was shooting with the Fuji S2 and a Nikon 12-24mm.


    Also, can I use the same extension ring that I used on the 8" port, or do I have to get a different ring for the 14-24mm?


    I tried searching for this topic but ended up with goose eggs.


    Thank you!

  5. Mark,


    Air costs about $4/fill. You'll need to get a local driver's license right away to get fills b/c that's the law.


    Hard to find? You can get almost everything on island, but you might have to drive to 3 different stores to find it. If you really need something, just go to Guam like Dave said -- there's a huge KMart and a WalMart is slated to be built. If you can ship over a 4WD truck, that would be key. You can get them there, but new ones are expen$ive and used ones are rusted out from all the salt in the air.


    Favorite macro site is Lau Lau Bay. You can find lots of shrimp and gobies in the coral rubble. Along the pipe in 50' there's my favorite Pink Anemonefish couple and you can find lots of transparent shrimp and small crabs right around there. The coral's not much to write home about, but there's a lot of stuff if you spend some time looking.


    Wide angle site faves were the Grotto and Wing Beach (diveable March-July), and Banzai Cliff (if it's diveable at all, one of the better sites).


    When you get to Saipan, give my buddies Joe and Dale a buzz at Speedy Tertle (http://www.speedytertle.com). They'll take care of you. Tell 'em Marlo sent you.


    And if you get sick of the diving there, just head over to the Philippines, Bali, Palau, Yap -- it's so easy.

  6. A week or so ago the wetpixel homepage did a feature on a "Leek Detector", invented by a guy named Leek. I think it was reasonably priced. The Aquatica one costs about $60 and I think the Leek detector costs half that. They both have a water sensor that is connected to an LED that you position in the LCD glass viewer.

  7. Alex,


    I think you may have searched/posted in the wrong forum if you're looking for help on the Olympus digital cameras, which may explain the lack of hits on your search!


    Anyway, I have the Olympus 3000 and 4000 digital zooms, and both these fire a pre-flash. Yes, I think your strobe is synchronizing with the pre-flash. The Oly 5050 (and I believe the 5060) has a setting that allows you to cancel the pre-flash.

  8. Escalar,


    I went through the same excitement you did when I first got my S2 a few months ago.


    Working in RAW is not just for advanced users, although if you're shooting for a magazine or some other publication you will probably want RAW. If you want to squeeze the most out of your shots, RAW is the way to go. It's the equivalent of a digital "negative" that you can use over and over again to produce photos. Whereas .jpg is a compressed file that has lost some information by the time it's stored on your media card.


    When you're in the FinePix Viewer, you can convert from RAW to TIFF. First click on a photo you want to convert. Click on "Tools", which opens a drop down menu. Click on "Convert RAW to TIFF" -- I think that's what it says, or something similar to that.


    You then get the window to convert. You should to experiment with each feature, like "Curves" to see what happens to your file. When you're done tweaking all the fine points of the photo, click on Convert. You will get a TIFF file that's about 64 megabytes. I then open that file in Photoshop elements, which prompts you to convert from 16 bit to 8 bit color (accept this choice to open the file). Edit as needed in PE. I usually don't need to do much editing after fine-tunine in the RAW coverter. If I do any editing, it's to rotate the photo, then use very minimal Unsharp Mask. All the brightness and color you can adjust during the RAW-TIFF conversion. Then you'll have to convert to .jpg when you're all through. You have to choice to save it as a large, medium or small .jpg file. Pick whichever one suits your needs. For net use, small files are probably OK, but if you want the most detail for prints, pick the large file.


    I usually delete the TIFF file when I'm completely done b/c it uses so much disk space. I'll save the RAW file on my hard drive, and make copies on CD of the RAW and .jpg files.


    This of course takes some time each evening after a shoot. If you want quick photos without having to do a lot of processing, just shoot fine .jpg. The S2 takes wonderful .jpg photos. And make backup copies of all your files, well-labeled for future reference.


    One of the limitations with RAW is that you can squeeze in only 77 shots on a 1 gig-card, whereas you can get a few hundred shots in fine .jpg and even more on regular .jpg. If you're worried about space, just buy another card!


    Good luck, and happy snappy.

  9. It could be as simple as that he is not lining up the MSC switch properly...





    I made this error first time I tried fitting the camera into the housing. Make sure to set the switch on the camera to M, along with the dial on the housing switched to M. Also check that the on/off dial is pulled up as far as possible and in the "off" position. The zoom/focus dial should be pulled up as far as possible and placed in the retracted position. Once you've got all these things set, the camera should be able to screw onto the base plate. Took me about 10 tries before I got everything right.


    Last thing to check is the focus or zoom gear: they have to be positioned so that the black silicone "grabber" pieces/noodles on the inner grooves of the gear fit directly over the focus or zoom ring on the lens. You probably will have to cut the silicone noodles into smaller pieces so the gear slides on easier -- there are a few threads on the board that talk about this procedure if you do a search.


    If the above doesn't work, email Blake at Aquatica and see what he can do for you. Good luck.

  10. On a recent dive trip I didn't follow my checklist and forgot to pack the extension ring for my Aquatica 8" dome port. I did have the ring for the 105 mm macro flat port, so I just used that and the WA shots seem to be fine. The flat port ring is slightly longer than the dome port ring.


    Now that I'm back home, I can't seem to find the dome port extension ring so it looks like I'm stuck with the flat port extension until I can get a replacement.


    I don't see any noticeable focus or softness issues using the macro port ring. Has anyone else ever had experience using a non-specs extension ring when in a bind?


    It seems a lot easier to pack one less extension ring, especially nowadays when weight and space on puddle jumpers is more of an issue.


    Or am I missing out on optimum optics by using the slightly longer extension ring with the 12-24 DX and 8" dome port?

  11. Forgot to add that I use the instructions from Fuji on how to open and close the shutter, but clean the sensor using the pbase link instructions. The materials for the pbase method costs just a few cents a cleaning compared to several dollars a cleaning for the Fuji-recommended method using the individually-packaged swabs, but the many testimonials on the pbase link swayed me that "skimping" on costs doesn't really mean skimping on quality.

  12. Hmmm. In my oh-so-scientific (NOT!) field tests, I was trying to figure out where the darned line was coming from on my PT-010/4000, I lifted the housing completely out of the water and with the LCD watched the water drain very slowly from the vents. The opposite occurred when I took it underwater -- I initially would get the line at the very top of the frame. I unscrewed the WAL and out came some air bubbles that couldn't escape completely through the vents. JohnJ, I don't have the dome port with the convex surface, just the flat WAL, so I don't know if the beadline you've experienced is similar to the one I'm talking about.


    As for using an ND filter to keep the top half of the shot from overexposing, that's definitely one way of doing it if you can figure out a good way. I got around the problem by exposing for the lighter top half and using strobes to fill the bottom half.

  13. Yes, the macro port and extension ring do "screw" on to the housing and to each other. I made sure they were tight the night before, but didn't check before the dive, so that could be the issue. I also checked the o-rings the night before in rather dim light, so the whole mess might have been user error given all the dust floating around my room. I think I should develop and routinely follow a checklist for diving with the housing.

  14. Well, I've been testing my Aquatica S2 housing on various shallow and deep dives, and yesterday on a deep dive (90+ feet) I noticed drops on the inside of the display glass. I couldn't tell if it was coming from the function buttons or somewhere else. Inside the housing I had a soft 2-lb weight wrapped in crumpled brown lunch-bag paper. At the time I was using a macro port with extension ring for the 105 Micro, and it looked like there was a wet "bubble" in the seal between the glass where it seats on the inside of the port. When I got topside I noticed that there was some wetness around the fitting between the macro port and the extension ring.


    So my question is whether I should take the housing on another dive to try to find exactly where the leak is coming from. If it's the o-ring between the port and extension ring, I think I can remedy that with a good lubing and cleaning, but if it's the macro port/glass fitting that's leaking then I should send it back for Aquatica to look at. I'm also not sure where the water on the back display came from. Problem was that I didn't stuff the housing all the way with paper so the soft weight was moving around a bit and may have distributed a few drops. Should I not risk further seawater damage by taking it on another dive?



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